Students wishing to earn a graduate degree in integrative physiology may pursue a Master of Science or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in the field. These degree programs explore animal and human function at various levels, such as organic and cellular, and usually provide plenty of research opportunities. Explore these degree programs and some of their requirements below.
Information for Graduate Degree Programs in Integrative Physiology
Although doctoral students usually have to complete a dissertation, master's students may be able to choose from programs that are coursework only or culminate in a research project or thesis. Students may have the opportunity to conduct research in various areas of integrative physiology, such as cell physiology, immunology, neurophysiology and more, but here we take a look at some of the common courses for these degree programs.
Students in immunology courses study the human immune system and immune response. These courses explore the different components of the immune system, such as macrophages, T-cells, B-cells and more. Students also learn how different immune responses are controlled and how different cells work together to protect against diseases and illnesses.
Courses in biomechanics explore the motion of the human body. Some of these courses focus on examining classic and current research in the field, while others may focus on the analysis of motion. These courses typically include concepts from engineering, physics, physiology and anatomy to understand the various body movements for different activities.
Students in integrative physiology programs usually take a course in genomics, but these courses may be paired with another subject, such as bioinformatics or physiological genetics. These courses cover various genomic concepts, including how genetics affect the normal function of physiological systems. Students also generally learn about some of the research methods in the field and how to analyze data with different mathematical and computational tools.
Endocrinology courses focus their study on the endocrine system. Students study the function and structure of the human and/or mammalian endocrine system. This includes the examination of chemical communication of the endocrine system using hormones, semiochemicals and other chemicals.
Students are typically required to take a course in biochemistry, but these courses may also cover a variety of topics, such as exercise biochemistry or biochemistry and metabolism. In general, these courses explore the chemistry behind the particular biological activity or process they are examining. These courses usually come with prerequisites of chemistry or other biochemistry courses.
Common Entrance Requirements
It is common for master's and doctoral degree programs in integrative physiology to require applicants to submit their official transcripts, GRE scores, letters of recommendation and a personal statement with their application. Some programs may also ask students to submit a resume or CV and may have a minimum GPA requirement. Most master's degree programs require students to hold a bachelor's degree, and doctoral degree programs typically require a master's degree. Depending on the program, some students may be asked to complete an interview process prior to admission to the program.
A Master of Science or PhD in Integrative Physiology degree program prepares students with the necessary research skills needed in the field. Students are usually able to choose coursework and research opportunities that align with their personal interests.